Can a practicing homosexual to be a Christian?

I saw an article where a woman claiming to be a Christian fell in love with a another woman, divorced her husband and married her new love: http://www.charismanews.com/us/64992-famed-christian-mommy-blogger-throws-faith-to-the-wind-to-marry-lesbian-partner . There was one line which really caught my attention, where she said if Jesus “needed me to believe that homosexuality was a sin, He would have mentioned it.”

The thing is, God has done exactly that:

Lev 19:1

And Jehovah spoke to Moses, saying, …

Lev_20:13

If a man also lies with mankind, as he lies with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination. They shall surely be put to death. Their blood shall be on them.

 

Adopting a sinful lifestyle shows the “christian” is only one in name, not in  fact.

We are only Christians is we hold fast to the faith until the end.

Hebrews 3:6

but Christ was faithful as a Son over His house—whose house we are, if we hold fast our confidence and the boast of our hope firm until the end.

Hebrews 3:13-14

13 But encourage one another day after day, as long as it is still called “Today,” so that none of you will be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin. 14 For we have become partakers of Christ, if we hold fast the beginning of our assurance firm until the end

Not everyone who claims to be a Christian is actually a Christian.

Matthew 7:21-23

21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of
heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter. 22 Many will say to Me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?’ 23 And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness.’

If we love Christ, if we know God, we will keep his commandments.

1 John 2:3-6

3 By this we know that we have come to know Him, if we keep His
commandments. 4 The one who says, “I have come to know Him,” and does
not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him; 5 but
whoever keeps His word, in him the love of God has truly been
perfected. By this we know that we are in Him: 6 the one who says he
abides in Him ought himself to walk in the same manner as He walked.

And God as clear that homosexual sex is a sin, against what God has said to do.
It doesnt matter if the person is male or female, they are not to have sex with someone of the same gender.
Romans 1:24-32

24 Therefore God gave them over in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, so that their bodies would be dishonored among them. 25 For they exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.  26 For this reason God gave them over to degrading passions; for their women exchanged the natural function for that which is unnatural, 27 and in the same way also the men abandoned the natural function of the woman and burned in their desire toward one another, men with men committing indecent acts and receiving in their own persons the due penalty of their error.  28 And just as they did not see fit to acknowledge God any longer, God gave them over to a depraved mind, to do those things which are not proper, 29 being filled with all unrighteousness, wickedness, greed, evil; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, malice; they are gossips, 30 slanderers, haters of God, insolent, arrogant, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, 31 without understanding, untrustworthy, unloving, unmerciful; 32 and although they know the ordinance of God, that those who practice such things are worthy of death, they not only do the same, but also give hearty approval to those who practice them.

1 Corinthians 6:9-10

9 Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, 10 nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God.

1 Timothy 1:8-11

8 But we know that the Law is good, if one uses it lawfully, 9 realizing the fact that law is not made for a righteous person, but for those who are lawless and rebellious, for the ungodly and sinners, for the unholy and profane, for those who kill their fathers or mothers, for murderers 10 and immoral men and homosexuals and kidnappers and liars and perjurers, and whatever else is contrary to sound teaching, 11 according to the glorious gospel of the blessed God, with which I have been entrusted.

So although some might want to claim God has not said anything about homosexual sex, the fact is that He did – its a sin. We are not to sin.

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With what sort of things should Christians be entertained?

So many time I see or hear Christians say they went to see some movie which depicts things God has said are abominable, or said to not do. I have long felt that a Christian should not be entertained by things God has said to not do. Does scripture agree?

First we have to realize There are things of the spirit and things of the flesh.

Galatians 5:19-24 (NKJV)

19 Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, 20 idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, 21 envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law. 24 And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.

So we know from Galatians 5:21 that we should not do the things considered to be works of the flesh, or we will not enter heaven.

Scripture tells us to not look at bad things.

Psalm 101:3 (NKJV)

I will set nothing wicked before my eyes;
I hate the work of those who fall away;
It shall not cling to me.

Scripture also tells us what to focus upon.

Philippians 4:8 (NKJV)

Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things.

We are warned that making ourselves friends with the world will ensure we are enemies with God.

James 4:4  (NKJV)

Adulterers and adulteresses! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.

Indeed, people who love the world or love the things in the world, do not have the love of God in them.  We are told not to love the things in the world – lust of the flesh, lust of the eyes, and pride of life – because they are of the world, not God.

1 John 2:15-17 (NKJV)

15 Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 16 For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world. 17 And the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever.

Finally, what ever we do, we are to do it in the name of the Lord.

Colossians 3:17 (NKJV)

17 And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.

Should a Christian  be entertained by something that depicts as good that God has said to not do? Magic/witchcraft/sorcery, getting drunk/high, homosexual sex, heterosexual sex with someone to whom you are not married, lying/deceitfulness, covetousness, stealing, murder are all things we are told are not good (Galatians 5:18-21, Romans 1:28-32).

Romans 1:28-32

28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a debased mind, to do those things which are not fitting; 29 being filled with all unrighteousness, sexual immorality, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, evil-mindedness; they are whisperers, 30 backbiters, haters of God, violent, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, 31 undiscerning, untrustworthy, unloving, unforgiving, unmerciful; 32 who, knowing the righteous judgment of God, that those who practice such things are deserving of death, not only do the same but also approve of those who practice them.

We should seek things which will please God, not the world.

Ephesians 5:8-10(NKJV)

For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light (for the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness, righteousness, and truth), 10 finding out what is acceptable to the Lord.

And we should not be entertained by things which depict as good the things God has said is evil – regardless of the form said entertainment is packed in – such books, games, movies, TV shows, theatre plays, etc.

 

For further discussion, see What and Who you surround yourself with affects you.

1 Peter 4:1-11

1 Peter 4:1-11

“Attitude, Ascension, Administer”

 

Today’s message is taken from 1 Peter 4:1-11. If you’ve been following along in this series, you know that this was written to believers in various churches in what is now Turkey about 64AD, just a few years before Peter’s crucifixion. It was written to encourage the readers during difficult times to endure and live lives that were worthy of the name of Christ.

Earlier, Peter wrote about how we need to submit to whomever God has placed in positions of authority: government, employers, husband. Peter said we need to love and live holy. He also said that all Christians need to “live in harmony with one another; be sympathetic, love as brothers, be compassionate and humble.Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult, but with blessing.”

Peter reminded us that We need to always be ready to give an answer for our hope: we are saved through faith in the resurrection of Christ, and we are baptized as a symbol of accepting what Christ has done for us.

 

1Therefore, since Christ suffered in his body, arm yourselves also with the same attitude,

Matthew 26:36-44. BECAUSE of what Christ has done, BECAUSE Christ not only was ready to suffer for our sins, but also because Christ DID suffer in his body for our sins, we need to have the same attitude. 1 Peter 1:13. We need to be prepared. We need to ready ourselves. Ephesians 6:10-18. We need to be prepared for battle! The battle is not with other believers . The battle is with the enemy! We need to arm ourselves with the same attitude that Christ had.

 

because he who has suffered in his body is done with sin.

Romans 6:6-7. Christ was crucified, when we believed in Him, we too were crucified with Him. The idea is that though we may suffer doubt or not want to do what God has in mind for us, we need to be faithful. We need to battle our bodies if it comes to that, and do what God has called us to do. We need to remember that we have been crucified with Christ! If we remember that, then we can remember that we no longer NEED to sin. We have the ABILITY, through the Holy Spirit, to live as though we are dead to sin. We need to live like it.

 

2 As a result, he does not live the rest of his earthly life for evil human desires,

Romans 8:5-10. A Christian MUST not live the rest of his life here on earth driven by the urges of the world. We must NOT be distracted by television, by radio, by what we read – unless it is the BIBLE. We must NOT be living like we used to live, or even like we might sometimes want to live. We need to live like Christ lived!

 

 

 

but rather for the will of God.

John 6:40; Romans 12:2. The main thing God wants is for people to believe in what He has done! The fact that God loves us so much that he sent his son to die for us so that people who believe could have eternal life with HIM shows what God’s main ‘will’ is.

But the other major will of God is that we not stay like we were. We need to be transformed! We need to be changed! And the way we are changed is NOT by just going to Church on holidays or even once or twice or seven times a week. No – we are changed by learning about God – who he is, what he has done, what he will do, what he expects. We are changed by being in a relationship with Christ, by walking with Christ daily. We are changed by praying day and night – hour by hour – minute by minute. We are changed by being with other maturing Christians who will challenge us to not be stuck where we are. We are changed by reading the Bible and letting the Word of God change us.

 

3 For you have spent enough time in the past doing what pagans choose to do—living in debauchery, lust, drunkenness, orgies, carousing and detestable idolatry.

Debauchery is defined by the dictionary as “extreme indulgence in sensuality“. Lust is defined as “an intense longing or craving”. Drunkenness is obvious – drinking to excess. Orgies is defined as “a sexual encounter involving many people”. [1] In the New Testament times, sometimes going to pagan temples involved drunken orgies. Carousing is going to parties of drunkenness. Detestable idolatry is putting ANYTHING in the place where GOD should be in your life. Don’t be like the world! BE like Christ!

Turn to Galatians 5:19-21. When we focus on the things that used to interest us, that used to drive us, we are not focusing on God. We need to remember that GOD did it, and we need to move past the things that the world does, or that we used to do, or that we still do. We need to not do things that keep us from God, instead we need to focus on God.

 

4 They think it strange that you do not plunge with them into the same flood of dissipation, and they heap abuse on you.

The word for ‘abuse’ is literally, blaspheme[2]. The people who did not believe lied about those who did. The believers Peter wrote to suffered shame and abuse at the hands of unbelievers, because of what they did. BECAUSE the believers would not participate in what was normal life for so many unbelievers, they were ridiculed. The same is true today. Often we get funny looks or snide comments for not living like people who do not know Christ. But you know what, if what those people say is true, change so that its not. If its not true, then ignore it, count it a blessing, and serve the Lord.

 

5 But they will have to give account to him who is ready to judge the living and the dead.

Turn to Matthew 12:36; 2 Timothy 4:1; John. 5:24. God will judge the world, through Christ. If we have Christ, then when we are examined, we will not pay the ultimate price – because Christ already paid it. We will not be condemned. However, if you do NOT claim Christ as your savior, then you will be condemned to hell. Its real. Its final. It may sound harsh – but its not. It doesn’t have to be that way for you. If you do not know Christ, then accept what he has done for you. If you accept that you are not perfect (that you’re a sinner) and that you can’t get into heaven on your own merits or works, that you need what Christ has done – if you believe that Christ is the only way to heaven and that he died for your sins so that you could be with him in his Father’s house in heaven, then you are saved and will not be condemned.

 

6 For this is the reason the gospel was preached even to those who are now dead,

Romans 1:18-23; Acts 17:26-27; 2 Peter 2:5. The Holy Spirit preached to the people around Noah in those times. The prophets preached to the people of Israel. People can see evidence of God in the world.

I’ve heard a story from a missionary who was delivering the the “Jesus” video in remote parts of the Ukraine. After showing the video, one old woman came forward weeping, and she related a story of how she had dreamed three nights before of a man coming to her telling her that she would learn the way to be with God – and it was the image of the same man who was the actor who played Jesus. She accepted Christ fully then and there!

People always have an opportunity to know God. But they have to WANT to know Him.

 

so that they might be judged according to men in regard to the body,

            People WILL be judged based upon the choices they make in THIS life. If you choose Christ, then you will not be condemned. But if you choose to NOT accept Christ, if you put it off until you die, then it will be too late, and you will in fact be condemned to the lake of fire.

 

but live according to God in regard to the spirit.

But once you’ve accepted Christ, you need to live according to the Word of God. You need to live with the Holy Spirit guiding you. You need to have the right inside to match the outside. Going to church will not save you. Being the child or parent of someone who claims Christ will not save you. You need to be saved through faith in Christ. At the instant that you have this faith, you are saved. And once you are saved, you need to LIVE like it! You need to not be jealous, or spiteful, or wanting revenge, or trying to “get yours”. You need to be humble, meek, loving, kind, respectful, honest.

 

 

7 The end of all things is near.

Mark 13:31-33. Christ is going to return soon – we do not know if it will happen in a minute, or a day, or a year, or when it will happen. But the end of all things is near. We need to live like it. We need to keep our eyes on Christ and the future we will have – not be bogged down with pain and suffering and worry in this life. The end of all things is near.

 

Therefore be clear minded and self-controlled so that you can pray.

Because the end of all things is near, we need to be sober minded – clear headed. And we need to be in control of ourselves. We need to not be driven by fear. We need to not be driven by greed. We need to not be driven by jealousy. We need to not be driven by lust. We need to not be driven by anything other than the love of Christ. If we do that, then we will be able to pray and pray effectively.

 

8 Above all, love each other deeply,

1 Corinthians 13:4-7. love = agape (same word, both passages). Self-sacrificing love – where one CHOOSES to love rather than has an emotion of love. This is the type of love where one chooses to do what is right for someone else, in this case other believers.

1 John 3:10-13. You should be identified by love. You need to be identified by the love you are supposed to have within you – the love of Christ. If you do not FEEL love, that’s ok. Sometimes we need do the action before the emotion comes. Sometimes we need to feel the emotion before the actions come. But you need to pray to God to help you love your brothers and sisters in Christ. You need to live according to the Spirit of GOD.

 

because love covers over a multitude of sins.

Are you someone who gets easily angered or frustrated by others? Are you someone who wants to TEACH everyone the RIGHT way? Do you need to talk about the weaknesses or failures of others, or their children? Turn to Proverbs 10:11-12; Proverbs17:9. We need to be people who love each other. We need to express that love by NOT stirring up dissention. Is what you have to say said in an attitude of love? Is what you have to say said in private, to the person who needs to hear it, rather than to your “friend” or “the pastor” (before you have gone to the person you have an issue with)? I’m not saying you should never go to someone else when someone is in sin, but there is a process for that. Have you followed that process? Do you know that process? If not, I suggest you find out and then follow it. But the first thing to do is PRAY for that person and that situation and yourself.  Be sure you are acting in love, not out of any other motivation. Love one another – for THAT is the will of God.

 

9 Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling.

Turn to Matthew 25:40-46; Matthew 10:41; Luke 14:12-14. Love of and for Christ involved helping those who need help, especially believers. Does a pastor need a place to stay? Does a missionary need a place to sleep? Does a believer need a place to stay? Hospitality would be you making an offer to put him up, either at your place or to pay for a motel room.

 

10 Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in its various forms.

1 Corinthians 12:4–11, 29–31; Romans 12:6–8 (more concrete example: Matthew 25:15-30; Luke 19:13–26). Each of us is different. Each of us have different gifts from God. We have different interests, talents, and spiritual gifts. Love for Christ and others involves you using what God has given you for the good of the church universal and the local church. If you love Christ, you will seek out the gifts God has given you and use them for the glory of God. Using your gifts for God’s purposes is the will of God. Administer God’s grace in the ways that God has given, or is giving, you.

 

11 If anyone speaks, he should do it as one speaking the very words of God.

A preacher should teach the word of God. A Bible teacher should teach the word of God. A prophet should preach the word of God – and any prophecy of the future MUST be tested by what the Bible says and whether or not the prophecy comes true (once a false prophet, always a false prophet). A believer should talk to people about God, using the word of God. All of us, who open our mouths, need to speak the very words of God! And we need to not be apologetic about it, we need to be bold about it, so that people recognize the power of God. I’m not saying be ‘in your face’, or rude, but be strong and sure of what you say.

 

If anyone serves,

he should do it with the strength God provides,

Acts 6:2-4 division of labor. Again, when we serve God, which is supposed to be daily, we need to rely on HIS power, not our own. Whether we serve tables, or clean the church, or print bulletins, or preach, or teach, or call people, or pray for others, or visit others, we need to do it in GOD’s power. When we do it in our own strength, we will tire and weaken and our attitudes will suffer and we will not be up to the task. But when we pray, and rely upon God, it is amazing how before we start, we might not have any energy, but somehow there’s always enough for God’s work.

 

so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ.

Everything you do needs to bring God praise through Jesus Christ. People need to look at your life and praise God. They need to look at your volunteerism and praise Christ. They need to look at your attitude and praise Christ. They need to hear your words and praise Christ. They need to look at your private life and praise God.

 

To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen. [3]

Always remember, the praise and glory always go to God. His is the power that lasts eternally. He is the one who created everything. He is the one who sustains everything. He is the one who gives what we need. He is the one who works all things for the good of those who love Him. He is the one who loves us all. We need to remember, even when things are hard or difficult or bad, God is good. We need to thank him and praise him and let others know where our faith lies.


[1] Merriam-Webster Online.  Available 4/17/2005 [http://www.m-w.com/cgi-bin/dictionary?book=Dictionary&va=debauchery&x=0&y=0]

[2]Walvoord, J. F., Zuck, R. B., & Dallas Theological Seminary. (1983-c1985). The Bible knowledge commentary : An exposition of the scriptures. Wheaton, IL: Victor Books.

[3]The Holy Bible : New International Version. 1996, c1984 (electronic ed.) (1 Pe 4:1). Grand Rapids: Zondervan.

The Bible and premarital sex.

What does the Bible say about premarital sex? Lets look.

If you are someone who is always wanting to have sex, then God said you should be married, to avoid sexual immorality. The implication is that having sex outside of marriage is included as part of what is considered sexual immorality.
1 Corinthians 7:2-5
 But because of immoralities, each man is to have his own wife, and each woman is to have her own husband. The husband must fulfill his duty to his wife, and likewise also the wife to her husband. The wife does not have authority over her own body, but the husband does; and likewise also the husband does not have authority over his own body, but the wifedoesStop depriving one another, except by agreement for a time, so that you may devote yourselves to prayer, and come together again so that Satan will not tempt you because of your lack of self-control.
Certainly sexual immorality is something we are to avoid.
1 Thessalonians 4:3

For this is the will of God, your sanctification; that is, that you abstain from sexual immorality.

In the Old Testament, If anyone seduced a virgin in Israel, he would have to marry her, paying the dowry for marriage. If her father refused to give the daughter to the man as his wife, the man still had to pay the dowry. This was intended to protect the woman who was being used by a man. But it also shows that premarital sex was not something to done lightly – there were consequences to it.

Exodus 22:16-17

16 “If a man seduces a virgin who is not engaged, and lies with her, he must pay a dowry for her to be his wife. 17 If her father absolutely refuses to give her to him, he shall pay money equal to the dowry for virgins.

We see in the New Testament that we are to maintain the honor of the marriage bed:
Hebrews 13:4
Marriage is to be held in honor among all, and the marriage bed is to be undefiled; for fornicators and adulterers God will judge.

This includes the fact that we are not  to have sex with prostitutes either.

1 Corinthians 6:16

16 Or do you not know that the one who joins himself to a prostitute is one body with her? For He says, “The two shall become one flesh.”

This brings to mind what is acceptable and unacceptable to God, when it comes to sex. this includes homosexual sex, bestiality, and incest.
Leviticus 18:6-23

‘None of you shall approach any blood relative of his to uncover nakedness; I am the Lord. You shall not uncover the nakedness of your father, that is, the nakedness of your mother. She is your mother; you are not to uncover her nakedness. You shall not uncover the nakedness of your father’s wife; it is your father’s nakedness. The nakedness of your sistereither your father’s daughter or your mother’s daughter, whether born at home or born outside, their nakedness you shall not uncover. 10 The nakedness of your son’s daughter or your daughter’s daughter, their nakedness you shall not uncover; for their nakedness is yours. 11 The nakedness of your father’s wife’s daughter, born to your father, she is your sister, you shall not uncover her nakedness. 12 You shall not uncover the nakedness of your father’s sister; she is your father’s blood relative. 13 You shall not uncover the nakedness of your mother’s sister, for she is your mother’s blood relative. 14 You shall not uncover the nakedness of your father’s brother; you shall not approach his wife, she is your aunt15 You shall not uncover the nakedness of your daughter-in-law; she is your son’s wife, you shall not uncover her nakedness. 16 You shall not uncover the nakedness of your brother’s wife; it is your brother’s nakedness. 17 You shall not uncover the nakedness of a woman and of her daughter, nor shall you take her son’s daughter or her daughter’s daughter, to uncover her nakedness; they are blood relatives. It is lewdness. 18 You shall not marry a woman in addition to her sister as a rival while she is alive, to uncover her nakedness.

19 ‘Also you shall not approach a woman to uncover her nakedness during her menstrual impurity. 20 You shall not have intercourse with your neighbor’s wife, to be defiled with her. 21 You shall not give any of your offspring to offer them to Molech, nor shall you profane the name of your God; I am the Lord. 22 You shall not lie with a male as one lies with a female; it is an abomination. 23 Also you shall not have intercourse with any animal to be defiled with it, nor shall any woman stand before an animal to mate with it; it is a perversion.

So we see some of what God has defined as sexual immorality includes sex with people to whom you are not married, relatives (mother, step-mother, aunt, sister, sister-in-law, step-sister, half-sister, grand-daughter), prostitutes, people of the same gender, animals.
Remember, Love is patient, kind, unselfish, and does not act unbecomingly – that would include having sex before marriage. IF we love someone, we will wait to have sex until we marry them.
1 Corinthians 13:4-5

Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant, does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered,

To summarize, we are not to have sex God considers immoral. We are not to have incestuous sex. We are not to have homosexual sex. We are not to have bestial sex. We are not to have sex with people to whom we are not married – including with prostitutes. We ARE to be married to avoid having immoral sex.
So  in short, no, you should not have sex before marriage. The Bible is very clear about that.

One of the coolest things happened yesterday…

As anyone who has been following me for any length of time knows, I post both here and on facebook. Sometimes I post a lot. Lately I have posted a few things on sexual sin.

I received a private message yesterday from a man who has been bringing his family to our church for a while now. They have been becoming friends with our church and family. We actually had lunch together a couple of Sundays ago, where I was able to open up a little about me and my family. He had seen that I had been posting stuff dealing with sex and wanted to know why I have posted so much lately on sexual sin and homosexuality. He wanted to know out of love and concern. He wanted to make sure everything was ok with me. He wanted to know if there was anything he could pray for me about. He was not judgemental (although he recoginzed the possiblity of sin in my life). He was not condemning. He was gracious and loving and encouraging.

This is the church in action. This is how Christians should act with one another.

We all have sins, which we must confess – we must agree with God that they are sins.

1 John 1:8-10

8 If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 10 If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar and His word is not in us.

We must not stop gathering together – this provides the mechanism for building relationships, which is needed to encourage one another to become more like Christ.

Hebrews 10:24-25

24 And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, 25 not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.

We must bear one another’s burdens, helping each other as we can, although we are each responsible for our own sins. We also have to make sure we dont fall into temptation.

Galatians 6:1-5

1 Brethren, even if anyone is caught in any trespass, you who are spiritual, restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness; each one looking to yourself, so that you too will not be tempted. 2 Bear one another’s burdens, and thereby fulfill the law of Christ. 3 For if anyone thinks he is something when he is nothing, he deceives himself. 4 But each one must examine his own work, and then he will have reason for boasting in regard to himself alone, and not in regard to another. 5 For each one will bear his own load.

James tells us that we must confess our sins to one another, so we can pray for each other so we can be healed. Anyone who turns a sinner from his ways saves a soul.

James 5:13-20

13 Is anyone among you suffering? Then he must pray. Is anyone cheerful? He is to sing praises. 14 Is anyone among you sick? Then he must call for the elders of the church and they are to pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord; 15 and the prayer offered in faith will restore the one who is sick, and the Lord will raise him up, and if he has committed sins, they will be forgiven him. 16 Therefore, confess your sins to one another, and pray for one another so that you may be healed. The effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much. 17 Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed earnestly that it would not rain, and it did not rain on the earth for three years and six months. 18 Then he prayed again, and the sky poured rain and the earth produced its fruit.

19 My brethren, if any among you strays from the truth and one turns him back, 20 let him know that he who turns a sinner from the error of his way will save his soul from death and will cover a multitude of sins.

Part of the purpose of going to church is to encourage one another in difficult times – and this includes when we are sinning. Our brothers in Christ should have a good relationship with us so they can come to us when they see we are not acting as we should and help us get on the right path. they can not do that if we are not open with them, or we do not have a relationship with them, or if they are not part of our lives sufficiently so they can see when we are sinning.

Thankfully, I was able to reiterate what I had said last week. I was able to try to reassure him I was not in trouble, but mentioned to him specific things which he could choose to pray about or not.

So yeah… one of the coolest things happened yesterday. A brother in Christ came to me to ask if I was in trouble and if he could pray for me. His private message challenged me to walk right in case I was not, and it was done in a non-judgemental, loving, merciful, gracious manner. The church in action. I love it!

Abstain from sexual immorality

This was an interesting passage I ran across recently.

1 Thessalonians 4:1-8

  Finally then, brethren, we request and exhort you in the Lord Jesus, that as you received from us instruction as to how you ought to walk and please God (just as you actually do walk), that you excel still more. For you know what commandments we gave you by the authority of the Lord Jesus. For this is the will of God, your sanctification; that is, that you abstain from sexual immoralitythat each of you know how to possess his own vessel in sanctification and honor, not in lustful passion, like the Gentiles who do not know God; and that no man transgress and defraud his brother in the matter because the Lord is the avenger in all these things, just as we also told you before and solemnly warned youFor God has not called us for the purpose of impurity, but in sanctification. So, he who rejects this is not rejecting man but the God who gives His Holy Spirit to you.

So many times, people want to accept some sin and reject others. Some will say to not have homosexual sex, while the ignore people who have sex outside of marriage. In fact, this command refers back to the moral code of the Old Testament – we must not sin sexually – in any way that God has said not to! While this includes homosexual sex, it also includes incest, people you are not married to, and bestiality (Leviticus 18).

There’s a lot of forbidden sex. One should not commit adultery (Genesis 20:1-7; Deuteronomy 5:18; Hebrews 13:4; Proverbs 23:26-27). One should not have sex with someone to whom you are not married (Deuteronomy 22:12-30)

One should not have sex with people of the same gender (Leviticus 18:22; 20:13; Romans 1:26-27; 1 Corinthians 6:9-10). One should not have sex with animals (Exodus 22:19; Leviticus 18:23, 20:15-16). One should not have sex with people to whom you are related (other than your husband or wife)  (Leviticus 18:6-15; 20; Deuteronomy 27:20-23; 1 Corinthians 5:1-13). This means to not have sex with  a close relative (Leviticus 18:6), with your sister/brother (Leviticus 18:9, 20:17; Deuteronomy 27:22), with your grandson/granddaugher (Leviticus 18:10), with your aunt/uncle (Leviticus 18:12-13; 20:19-20), with your daughter-in-law (Leviticus 18:15), your father’s wife (Leviticus 20:11; 27:20; 1 Corinthians 5:1-13), your wife’s mother (Leviticus 18:14; Deuteronomy 27:23), your brother’s wife (Leviticus 18:16), your wife’s granddaughter (Leviticus 18:17), your wife’s sister , while your wife is living (Leviticus 18:18) – basically any close relative by blood or marriage.

Seuxal immorality is contrary to sound doctrine and is one of the things we are to leave behind when we become Christians (Colossians 3:4-7; 1 Timothy 1:9-11). The people of Sodom and Gomorrah were sexually immoral and were judged for it (Jude 1:6-8). There should be no one who calls themselves Christ’s who is sexually immoral (Ephesians 5:2-4; Hebrews 12:15-17). We are not even to associate with the sexually immoral (1 Corinthians 5:10-12). God gives people an opportunity to repent from sexual immorality (), but God will judge and punish those who are sexual immoral (1 Corinthians 10:7-9; Hebrews 13:3-5; Revelation 2:19-21; Revelation 9:20-21; Revelation 21:7-9′ Revelation 22:14-16). Indeed, God goes on to say that the sexually immoral will not inherit the kingdom of God (1 Corinthians 6:9-10; Galatians 5:19-21).

We should be in control of ourselves – we are not animals who can not (or will not) control themselves. We are God’s people – we are to be holy as God is holy (1 Peter 1:16). This is one of the reasons God has given marriage – to prevent sexual immorality (1 Corinthians 7:2-5;  1 Thessalonians 4:3-5).

Realize there is a major warning here –  by rejecting this instruction, you reject God.  This is not something to be taken lightly. We must look to God and not indulge ourselves. We must be holy, and this is one area of holiness which God haas mentioned a lot. So it must be both common and a definite no-no. Control yourself, Christian! Be God’s person and do not disobey God, or suffer the consequences – both in this life and in the afterlife.

What if your child comes out as gay?

There are some who want to claim being gay is not a sin, while others claim having homosexual sex is not gay. Some people believe that people re born gay, while others think people become gay. I think the reason one is gay is irrelevant to whether one should have homosexual sex. I dont care which hair you split it on, it boils down to the idea that lusting in your heart is sin (Mat 5:28), and laying with someone of the same gender as a man and wife do is a sin (1 Timothy 1:10). But the purpose of this post is not to discuss that, but to make you think a little bit…

So what do you do if your child comes out as gay? Do you invite him/her to family events? Do you invite the significant other? Does that indicate accepting, embracing, or encouraging sin? Should you treat a child who is living with someone outside of wedlock any differently? Why or why not?

 

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